December 4, 2015

Tis the season for holiday shipping both in store and on-line. Many people, including myself, will do most of their shopping on-line. Not only are you on the hunt for the perfect gift but you should also keep an eye out for a phishing attack!

These attacks happen when an outside attacker attempts to gain info from someone by claiming to be someone or something they are not. The classic example, is of an attacker sending an email pretending to be someone you know, like your own bank. You can usually spot these attackers because the email is poorly made and filled with grammatical errors and a bad layout. Unfortunately some of these emails are near perfect and have wreaked havoc on the unknowing.

As mentioned above, some ways to tell if you are being spoofed is if you see any grammatical errors. Typically copywriters and editors make very few mistakes and if this email is coming from a “big” company like Amazon or Mastercard you better believe they pay people enough to guarantee no spelling mistakes.

Another sign is emails that are formatted differently than normal. For instance images not loading in the email or on a website that the email redirects you to is a bug warning sign. As well as boxes not lining up and the website/email looking unprofessional in general.

One of the best ways to prevent yourself from getting scammed is to be skeptical about everything! Especially a holiday deal that seems too good to be true, and never click on links unless it’s a trusted source. Another precaution to take, is to stay up to date on your software/anti-virus. The best advice we can give you is to use your best judgement. If something feels fishy and makes you uncomfortable then you probably shouldn’t be giving out any personal information.